Wednesday, February 3, 2010

three days or three daze

Just got back from three very full days at the New York International Gift Fair. I write about the experience every six months. I pack up travel to the city and throw myself into days of picking and choosing new products for the upcoming seasons. Thousands of vendors showcasing hundreds of products and all to be viewed while navigating through more middle aged woman than you will ever see in your entire life time. Yes I'm back, home and happy. At the shop and content. However how do I answer the question every customer asks? " Was the show fun?" "Did you have a good time?".....really, they must perceive the trip as the ultimate shopping binge. Clearly they have never walked the average of 15 miles a day lugging bags of catalogs in search of inspiration. OK,OK, there is the moment when you do find a product, a look, the perfect missing piece for a theme planned for the future....when the weight of the bags disappear, the crowds don't exist and you are in a retail daze. Then you wake up and start requesting all the information you need to know. We ask.."What's your minimum opening order, your shipping costs, quantities on this item, where is your company based, when will it be available." Then we walk away shaking our heads in disbelief, that anyone would buy five hundred dollars in sea salt...even if they were packaged in great vintage looking bottles.
Lets see, the best moments of this years show....Meeting up with Whitney, as she exited the social media seminar, leaping with excitement over her new wealth of knowledge.
Taking in the grand scale furniture and displays at the pier.
Riding the "party" bus from the Javits Center to the permanent showrooms at 7W. Sorry, no pictures the black lights and disco ball kept me from taking a photo of the group of ladies singing to "sock hop" music while the two large screen TVs ran reruns of old westerns.
Finding and reading the text on the charms, we finally ordered and having Isabella's expert opinion while choosing jewelry. (couldn't find a shot of the charms we ordered but you get the idea)
One on one time with a sales representative for over two hours, ordering Christmas goods, and we sealed the deal with a hug.
Hot bath Sunday night, at a friends place in the city.
The moment after I figured out two new favorite lines, one textiles, one soaps and tea towels, mix and match perfectly.
Susan's ability to crack herself up....always makes me laugh.
Realizing the jewelry we fell in love with, Isabella approves and is made in upstate NY.
I'm sure I will reflect on the days in a daze for weeks....all in all , Yes I had fun.